“Bold Thady Quill”


Girls "anxious for courting" should see Thady Quill. He is a champion in field events, a partisan for Ireland, and a star at hurling. At the Cork match a rich and sickly lady remarked that she would be cured by "one squeeze outa bold Thady Quill"


The description is from the Digital Tradition text for "Bold Thady Quil"; although its credit is "Recorded by Clancys" its version has more verses than that in IRClancyMakem01.

IRClancyMakem01 cover notes refer to Thady Quill as "a champion hurler from county Cork, whom I understand is still alive" [1959]. - BS

Hurling is an ancient Irish sport, somewhat similar to hockey (it involves sticks, two teams of 15, and a complicated set of rules for sticking or kicking or carrying the ball), seemingly mentioned in twelfth century records and possibly before that. According to the _Oxford Companion to Irish History_, the rules were formally codified in 1870 and the Irish Hurley Union formed in 1879.

It was already mentioned in song before that, to be sure; see "The Victorious Goalers of Carrigaline and Kilmoney."

There is an interesting political twist on this, because the sport is Irish: It is seen, in a small way, as a form of anti-Protestant demonstration.

The Irish nationalist Charles Stewart Parnell (1846-1891) doesn't appear to have anything significant to do with hurling, but the Hurley Union dissolved around the time of his death, with other leagues having gradually taken its place.- RBW

Cross references


  • The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem, "Bold Thady Quill" (on IRClancyMakem01)


  2. BI, RcBoThQu


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1959 (IRClancyMakem01)
Keywords: sports Ireland humorous
Found in: Ireland